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10 Ways to Beat Prediabetes

10 Ways to Beat Prediabetes

According to diabetes.org, approximately 86 million American adults have prediabetes, and another 29.1 million have developed Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. There is a long list of health complications associated with being diabetic, so it is imperative for those in a prediabetic state to take immediate action to prevent the onset of this disease. Fortunately, you can get your health under control by implementing a few new practices into your daily routine.

1. Remove soda and sports drinks from your diet.

One of the biggest issues that people with diabetes face is difficulty keeping their blood sugar in line. If you have been diagnosed with prediabetes, it is just as important to remove all unnecessary sugar from your diet. Caffeine can also cause problems, so your best bet is to stop drinking all regular sodas, sports drinks, sweet tea and anything else that contains caffeine. When temptation to grab a soda strikes, be sure to remind yourself that the average 12-ounce can is filled with the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of sugar.

2. Start a regular exercise program.

Exercise and diet are two of the most important things for you to embrace if you want to avoid developing diabetes. Experts recommend working out for at least 30 minutes per day, and this may require some professional input or instruction to help ensure you stay safe and don’t get bored. For example, Les Mills fitness programs offer a wide variety of options, ranging from dancing to a full-body weights workout. Utilizing a program that allows you to learn many different things will make exercising more mentally and physically engaging, and it will also give you a better overall workout.

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3. Make the switch to low-fat dairy products.

The good news is that you do not need to completely give up dairy unless you’re lactose intolerant. However, your body will thank you for it if you begin substituting low-fat or no-fat dairy products. The American Diabetes Association advocates that this is one of the best ways to keep your intake of sugar and carbs low while still getting the necessary protein and calcium. You can get used to the lower fat products by gradually stepping down from whole fat to 2 percent, followed by 1 percent and, finally, no-fat.

4. Keep a diary of your food consumption and emotions.

A food diary is important for prediabetics and people with diabetes, and it can also be useful for everyone else. In a nutshell, you should write down what you eat, along with the time, and monitor yourself for any mood changes. Carefully capturing all of this information can help clue you in to which food items are causing you the most issues. Additionally, tracking your food will help you get a better idea of how healthy, or unhealthy, your daily diet actually is. From there, you can make the necessary changes to improve your health.

5. Replace bad carbs with whole grain food.

Whole grains have been found to help people avoid diabetes, and they can even prevent someone from reaching the prediabetic stage. In fact, studies have found that ingesting at least 59 grams of whole grains daily will reduce your odds of becoming prediabetic by 27 percent. Researchers also discovered that people who consume 30 grams or less of whole grains are at the highest risk of becoming diabetic. In other words, check your pasta, bread, cereal, and other grains to ensure that you are getting enough whole grains.

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6. Avoid juice and eat fruit instead.

Fruit juice might seem like a good idea, but the reality is that most of these drinks are packed with sugar. A comparison of soda and juice found that many popular juice items, including Minute Maid 100 percent Apple Juice, are just as bad, or even worse, than popular sodas such as Pepsi and Mountain Dew. Meanwhile, fruit has fiber and other nutrients that help your body better absorb their natural sugar content.

7. Increase your water consumption.

One of the issues that can plague people with prediabetes is feeling hungry even after they have eaten. Because of this, experts recommend increasing your daily water intake. It is best to drink a full glass of water after each meal, and you can also help ward off hunger by drinking another full glass with your food and in-between your typical meal times.

8. Commit to 8 hours of sleep per night.

Sleep deprivation is one of the many risk factors that can lead to prediabetes, so getting more than six hours of sleep every night is a must. However, if you are already prediabetic, you will want to commit yourself to a regular schedule that allows you to get eight hours of sleep every night. Doing this will help your body deal with the prediabetic stress, and it is one of many steps you can take to stop your downward spiral toward Type 2 diabetes.

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9. Remove junk food from your home.

Humans are creatures of habit, which means that if you keep junk food in your home, you are most likely going to eat it during moments of stress. If you must keep some unhealthy snacks in your house, be sure to put them out of sight so that you will be less likely to think of them when you are feeling hungry. Ideally, though, you will remove all of the candy and other junk food and replace it with easily accessible healthy snacks, including fruit and vegetables.

10. Reach for food that is high in fiber.

Food that is rich in fiber will typically have a lower glycemic index (GI), and this is an important component in reducing your blood sugar levels. Keep in mind that naturally occurring food sources are best because highly processed food tends to have a higher GI, regardless of the fiber content. In other words, it is best to choose high fiber food such as whole grain pasta, lentils and broccoli.

Another important thing you can do to help yourself is to become educated about the common diabetes misconceptions. Combining knowledge with lifestyle changes is truly the best way to stop prediabetes in its tracks.

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Featured photo credit: Image by Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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Holly Chavez

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Last Updated on October 14, 2019

10 Simple Ways To Increase Metabolism Without Working Out

10 Simple Ways To Increase Metabolism Without Working Out

When it comes to increasing your metabolism, getting a good workout a couple of times a week is only one of many players. If you’re not a fan of lifting heavy stuff, then you’re only expending extra energy for that, say, one hour of that specific day. But what about the remaining 23 hours? How can you make sure you’re burning blubber all throughout the day? Here are 10 simple ways to increase your metabolism without working out.

1. Stand More

Many health practitioners claim that sitting is the new smoking. We sit in the office, we sit in the car, we sit when we get home. It’s not only terrible for your health and posture, but you require a lot less energy when seated. So, a good way to ignite the furnace a bit is to stand as much as possible through out the day. You work in an office? Put two boxes under your keyboard or laptop. There are many free solutions to making a standing desk—so you have no excuses. When you’ve gotten used to standing while working you will quickly find that it’s easier to stay engaged as well—you’re less inclined to drift away mentally. In fact, this post was written standing.

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2. Gamify Your Life

Toys such as the Fitbit or Nike Fuelband, or apps like Argus, can help you increase your metabolism by giving you an incentive to walk more. Argus, and other apps like it, use the accelerometer in your smartphone to measure your steps and let you know when you’ve hit your daily goal. Fitbit and the Nike Fuelband do the same, but have a host of other functions to make being healthy a tad more fun.

3. Eat Your Veggies

Fibrous vegetables like cauliflower and broccoli increase your metabolism by putting your digestive system on overdrive. It just simply requires more energy to break down the tough fiber of these nutritional powerhouses. You’ll also start feeling like a rock star from the overload of vitamins and minerals from eating more vegetables.

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4. Eat Protein

This is one of those rules that’s not to be misunderstood. While it does boost your metabolism to eat more protein, it should be instead of other foods, not on top of other foods. If you’re stuffing your face with a chicken breast when you’re not hungry just to boost your metabolism, you’re doing it wrong. Of the three macro-nutrients—fats, carbs and protein—protein is the one that requires the most energy to break down. So, if you switch out some of those cheese sandwiches with a few hardboiled eggs you’re on the right path.

5. Drink Loads Of Cold Water

Drinking a few glasses of ice-cold water in the morning can boost your metabolism quite effectively. Your body expends energy on constantly staying in homeostasis when it comes to temperature, so if you chug a bunch of icy water you’re making your body expend more energy on keeping itself at the same temperature. Using temperature to expend more energy is called thermogenesis and it’s one of the most efficient ways of cranking up your calorie burning—more on this further down.

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6. Spice Up Your Meals

Spices like cayenne, chilli, ginger and turmeric ignite your metabolism and make your meals a bit more exciting. If you make it a habit to add a little bit of spice to each of your meals it can be a habit that turns you into a fat-burning furnace.

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    7. Drink Caffeine

    No, drinking loads of coffee is not bad for you. The sugar and heavy cream you could be inclined to chase it down with might be though. Caffeine helps mobilize—that is, get rid of—adipose tissue, or fat. It also helps athletic performance, and some individuals report it to have appetite-curbing effects. If you’re very sensitive to stimulants, try not to have caffeine too close to bedtime though, as it can mess with your sleep.

    8. Plan Your Meals Around Exercise

    I know the title of this post says “…Without Working Out” but this trick technically is more a nutritional trick than an exercise-related one. When you’ve exerted yourself and, hopefully, broken down some muscle fibers, your protein synthesis, or the rate at which you build muscle, increases. So, having heavy meals after a workout will make sure those calories get stored in the right places. This is one of the reasons it’s a good idea to get a heavy session in before the Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.

    9. Do Intermittent Fasting

    It’s long been said you should always eat a heavy breakfast as it kick starts your metabolic rate. There hasn’t been any study proving this though. There have only been behavioral studies correlating obesity with breakfast skippers, but it’s always been a case of confusing correlation with causation. It’s not the fact that you skip breakfast that makes you fat; it’s the poor food choices you make throughout the rest of your day. Studies have shown that fat burning increases the longer you get into a fast, obviously depending on the body fat level of the individual. In fact, in one study lowered metabolic rate did not occur until 60 hours into a fast. Intermittent fasting is very much one of the bigger wins when it comes to increasing your metabolism.

    10. Use Cold Exposure

    For some reason it’s been common knowledge for a while that sweating increases metabolic rate. Scientist have known for a while though that the opposite is actually true; exposing yourself to cold temperatures increase your calorie burn significantly. Just slight shifts in your home temperature can mean pounds lost or gained when you gather the numbers yearly. How else do you think swimmer Michael Phelps is able to eat 12,000 calories a day? Obviously, he swims hours each day, but it’s not just the exercise he gets from swimming that allows him to consume such quantities of food, it’s also the amount of energy the body has to expend to keep itself at its baseline temperature in the cold water. So, taking ice-cold showers, decreasing the temperature of your home, or swimming in cool pools will help you burn a lot more calories.

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